Mary Cisper's first poetry collection, Dark Tussock Moth, won the 2016 Trio Award from Trio House Press and was published in 2017. It is available for purchase through Amazon and Barnes & Noble.
Dark Tussock Moth journeys through personal history, western landscapes touched by humans and drought, and the life and legacy of 17th century artist and naturalist Maria Sibylla Merian to explore metamorphosis: “The mind can instantly connect one piece of information with any other piece.” Merian, who has been called the mother of ecology, documented insect and plant relationships. Various lenses—ecopoetic, ekphrastic, philosophical—are turned toward “the number of celestial objects” as this collection notes entanglements of memory and desire. Form, collage, and parataxis engage the ever-arising cosmos; place, flowers, and insects may be apertures—but what does it mean to look? As Jorie Graham writes, “What you get is to be changed.” In the space between looking and surrender, Dark Tussock Moth hovers: “what makes itself : itself”.
See Newfound's interview ("Open a Cocoon") with Mary Cisper in Vol. 8 No. 2.